Bad Headlines Work…Sometimes

These notes help the words find their place upon the page…sometimes.

Someone cue John Denver because all my bags are packed and I only need to find a way to fall asleep, wake up and get to the airport for a plane ride that could feel quite long to me.

It is not because it is actually long but because of the weight that comes with unexpected and unplanned travel.

Moments like now are when you ask the ridiculous question of how much is a life worth. How much are you willing to spend and what are you wiling to do to try to move the boulder back up the hill to where it belongs.

And the shame of asking this question doesn’t just lie upon me, but upon all of us because this is what we have created.

But in a time 0f social turmoil and unrest it makes perfect sense to me to ask, think and consider all that surrounds it.

Bad Headlines Work…Sometimes

The quote above is one of my favorites which is why I am using it here again a single day after the most recent.

It has special meaning to me given the lack of sleep from the prior night which in the annals of my life ranks among the top 10 worst.

Some of it is because of stress and some of it is because whatever bug attacked kicked my ass up, down and around the bend.

I rolled, flipped and flopped around the bed from 12:30 to 4:23 and then had to open my eyes again far too soon because dad couldn’t take this day off.

But they gave me a double dose of feisty and determined at birth so I strove to give as good as I got.

I suppose I’ll measure my success by whether I get on the plane looking like an ad for the value of cold medicine or if I just look a little tired.

Been injecting myself with significant amounts of Zinc and staring at pictures of the birds on the Parma porches.


The young mister joined me on a trip to Plano and other parts of North Dallas today and we had some very real conversations about some of the events.

When he asked me what I thought I told him if he wanted to know if I was scared the answer is yes.

“Sure I am, but I have gotten pretty good at embracing my fear. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t bother me because it does, but I have a tendency to try to pull it closer. Sometimes it helps.”

We spent a few minutes talking about it and then I reminded him I don’t like saying goodbye anymore than he does.

“I have been forced to do it many times. I have buried friends and relatives. I have had people break up with me and been forced to go a different way. It is part of life and if it doesn’t hurt to say goodbye you might wonder if you wasted your time.

He nodded his head and the conversation turned a 180 degrees into storytelling and how to capture a reader’s attention.

“Bad headlines work sometimes too. I am not talking about blatant link bait, but just bad headlines. Sometimes you can say be direct about a bad headline and make it work, but you better provide solid content inside.”

Music Break

Calypso– John Denver
Hurt-Johnny Cash
Don’t Let Me Down– The Beatles
Band On The Run-Paul Mccartney & Wings
May This Be Love -Jimi Hendrix
Texas Flood– Stevie Ray Vaughan

The Message

Somewhere around 3 AM when I wondered why I didn’t have the benefit of knowing I felt like hell because of the great fun I had the night before another thought crept through my head.

“I am well acquainted with solitude and loneliness. I know firsthand what it means to be in a place where the only one I can rely upon to take care of me is me.”

I shuffled into the bathroom and held onto the shower stall while I took care of business. As I shuffled back I muttered some sarcastic remark at the reflection about sucking it up but all I got was the finger and a curse through clenched teeth.

“That is the spirit, fight harder you old coot.”


It is a full year since I slipped down a few stairs and dislocated the index finger on my right hand.

Most of the time it doesn’t do anything to remind me of its injury, but this morning it didn’t feel quite right.

Almost made me chuckle to see a full mutiny on hand, but not really.

The evening of the fall I walked back up to my apartment and considered whether I could pop it back into place myself.

I was more irritated at the thought of having to go sit by myself at some urgent care facility with a bunch of sick people.

But I took some perverse pleasure in what would happen if I got pulled over and how I would explain to the cop I lived alone and didn’t think it made sense to wait for an Uber or cab.

“No officer, I am not flipping you the bird, but if I was you really couldn’t blame me because no one has a finger that naturally points this direction.


Fear comes at funny times and in funny ways and you never know how you will respond in certain situations until you encounter it or them.

So instead of wondering and worrying about what I might or might not do I try to remind myself to take it a day at a time.

And sometimes I break up the day because some days feel like eternity.

It is time to go now as I need go find Mr. Sandman and bid him bring me a dream or at least something that will shut my eyes and provide a solid night of sleep.

The storm comes and I must prepare.

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